For four straight seasons, Jessica Lange was considered the absolute lifeblood of FX's thriller series American Horror Story. Her memorable performances in the anthology series gained her much attention and praise, including a Golden Globe and two Emmys. Jessica's characters stole the show, and audiences excitedly tuned in each season to see what haunted mischief she was up to.
From the mysterious, busybody next-door neighbor Constance Langdon in Murder House to the stylish and motivated ringmaster Elsa Mars in Freak Show, the morally multifaceted and tortured characters she played quickly became fan favorites. Fans were totally stunned when the actress announced that she would not return for Season 5 of the FX series, Hotel.
Why did Jessica Lange leave 'American Horror Story' after four seasons?
When Jessica announced to the public that she would be leaving American Horror Story after Season 4 in November 2013, fans were completely at a loss. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she spoke about why she decided to leave. Jessica shared, “It ends up being a lot of time during the year being committed to something. I haven’t done that for a long time. It’s like doing a stage play between the rehearsal and the run. This is a six-month commitment every year."
She went on to say, "That will be four years in a row. I want to have more time to myself I guess. Once it’s over and I have a full year ahead of me with nothing to do, who knows? It might not have been the best decision. But I think four years doing something is a sufficient amount of time.” Jessica had originally only signed on to appear in one season of the show.
She kept returning because of her characters and the wonderful collaborative relationship that had formed between herself and AHS creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk.
Despite leaving the series, Jessica reprised her role as Constance Langdon in Episode 6 of Season 8 of American Horror Story: Apocalypse, which actually earned her an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama. Her return was most likely the end of her era on the series.
Jessica Lange will not be coming back for Season 10 of 'AHS.'
Unfortunately, viewers will not see Jessica Lange in Season 10 of American Horror Story. We know it's hard to imagine the show without her, but it doesn't seem like she will be coming back at all to the show. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly in 2019 discussing her new role in the Netflix series The Politician, she was asked if she would ever come back to AHS.
Jessica noted, "I don’t think so. I feel like I got the best of it in those first four seasons. Great characters. It was exciting to do. I worked with some of my favorite actors, but I can’t see that we could ever get back to that."
Watch American Horror Story on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EST on FX.